Buyer’s Representation

When a real estate agent lists a home, their pledge of client loyalty is to the seller. When a buyer contacts a home’s listing agent, they will make every effort to sell the potential buyer the home, but will do so with the interest of the seller in mind. As a real estate buyer, you have a right to representation by an agent working on your behalf and placing your best interest over that of the seller. In real estate, this service is provided by a Buyer’s Agent that has agreed to treat you as a client. Often times, the uninformed market participant will not recognize the need. In fact, a survey conducted by the Federal Trade Commission in 1983 revealed that 71% of buyers incorrectly thought that the agent showing them a property was looking out for their interests, when in actuality the salesperson was working for the seller. In reaction to this confusion, state legislatures eventually passed laws that required real estate agents to disclose what types of representation they could offer. It was the intent of this legislation to help real estate buyers (and sellers) make informed decisions on the type of representation appropriate for them. In real estate jargon, a client is someone to whom an agent owes their full loyalty and fiduciary responsibility. As a real estate purchaser, this is the relationship you want in order to make sure your best interests are served.  Alternatively, when dealing with a listing agent directly, they are representing the seller as a client, and you are simply a customer. The following table highlights the differences in the level and type of care you will get as a client of the Cornish-Lamppa Real Estate Team as opposed to being a customer of a selling agent:

 

Client of Cornish Lamppa

Customer of Selling Agent

Full Attention is paid to your needs Loyalty is maintained to the Seller’s Needs
Informed of all available information about the seller The Seller is told all information that can be learned about you
Keep information about you confidential Keep information about the seller confidential
Focus on the choices that meet your needs Focus on the choices that lead to a sale of the property
Provide material facts and professional advice Provide only material facts
Provide price counseling based on comparable properties and professional insights Only provide price information that supports the seller’s list price
Protect and guide you, the buyer Protect the seller
Negotiate on behalf of you Negotiate on behalf of the seller
Attempt to solve problems to your advantage Attempt to solve problems to the seller’s advantage and satisfaction